Fire damages Budget Inn in Evans County overnight - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Grease fire damages Claxton hotel overnight

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Crews begin to clean up after fire damages an Evans County hotel. Crews begin to clean up after fire damages an Evans County hotel.
CLAXTON, GA (WTOC) -

Power has been restored to a motel in Claxton after an overnight fire forced people in several units to evacuate.  

It happened shortly after midnight Wednesday at the Budget Inn on North Duval Street at U.S. 301. Claxton Fire Chief Harold Rogers said that Tony Hollis, a resident at the hotel, was cooking food when a pan of grease caught fire. Before Hollis could get to a fire extinguisher, it quickly spread and damaged his and several other surrounding units.

"It took between 25 and 30 firefighters from this volunteer department to stop this stubborn fire from destroying more units than it did," Rogers said in a news release.

Two units were heavily damaged by flames and seven other units were damaged by smoke. For now, the families that were staying in the damaged units were moved to another hotel for lodging. All hotel occupants got out safely and no other injuries were reported.

Budget Inn Manager Larry Rawls said he is devastated.

"I was taken back by it, seriously, all that fire. This place burned six years ago in August and here we go again. Now we have to get the power back on by tomorrow so the people taken to other hotels can come back." said Rawls.

The hotel had lost its power and water and money had to be refunded to those staying for the night. Electricians and the water company were out to restore the utilities.

The Red Cross provided assistance to the 12 adults and two children who were affected.

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